SEC Upset Special: LSU Over Alabama
Alabama is a 6.5-point favorite in this game, but LSU will come away victorious. I will give you three reasons why I think the Tigers can pull the upset Saturday night, but first let’s take a look at these two teams. The Tigers (7-2) have a couple of big wins over Wisconsin and Ole Miss, but the two losses weren’t pretty against Mississippi State and Auburn.
Alabama (7-1) lost in upset fashion to Ole Miss, but the Tide have looked impressive since losing that game.
It’s Called Death Valley For a Reason
It’s very tough for opponents to come out of Death Valley with a nighttime victory, so this will likely be a close game either way. Les Miles is 46-3 in night games at Death Valley, and he recently defeated Ole Miss at home under the lights.
LSU and Alabama is one of the best rivalries in college football and the numbers prove that. The last 10 games have seen each team split with five wins, even though the Tide have been winners in the last three. It’s also worth noting that LSU has only lost in Baton Rouge to Alabama three times since 2000.
The Tigers are being overlooked because of the offensive struggles, but the defense is still as dominant as usual. LSU ranks 4th in the country in points allowed, only giving up 15.9 points per game.
The rushing defense has been bad at times, but the secondary is among the best in the nation. If LSU can contain Alabama’s run game on early downs, it will likely come up with stops. The Tigers secondary has nine interceptions on the season and only gives up 158.4 passing yards per game, but how they contain the run is the ultimate matchup to watch.
LSU Can Run the Ball Well Enough to Score Points
LSU is a good quarterback away from being a national title contender, but I don’t think that hurts the flow offensively too much in this game. The Tigers rush game is 26th in the nation–averaging 225.7 yards per game–so the quarterback just has to play within the system. We saw this on display in the Ole Miss game on the final drive, when the power running game and timely play-action passes led the Tigers to victory.
If they are to win this game, they need another strong performance from Leonard Fournette and company.
The 6.5-point spread was too tempting to not take this week. Everyone on ESPN seems to think Alabama is the best team in the nation–despite losing to Ole Miss, but that is a very different argument–but the Tide have flaws just like everyone else. They struggled to run the ball against Arkansas, and I think LSU’s secondary can come up with some big interceptions Saturday night.
LSU 24, Alabama 23